ATLAS collision event with two charm-tagged jets.

In search of super charm

9th January 2015 – If all the experimental evidence supports a theory, why should anyone want to dream up additional particles? Yet exactly this situation arose in the late 1960s. At that time, when the complete table of the known hadrons could be explained with just three quarks, theorists were already proposing a fourth, which they whimsically called “charm”.

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After subtracting off the background from the data, the boson-pairs are clearly visible in the data!

The Art of Rediscovery

7th January 2015When I tell people I’m a particle physicist, one of the most frequent questions I get asked is: “So, have you discovered anything?” Funnily, I’ve spent much of the past two years trying to rediscover something that’s already been seen before. In today’s world, which fetishizes the New, this may seem slightly lame, but just because we’ve discovered something, doesn’t mean we’ve fully understood it.

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ATLAS Muon Big Wheel

Handing In the ATLAS Keys

8th December 2014 – After completing more than 250 work packages concerning the whole detector and experimental site, the ATLAS and CERN teams involved with Long Shutdown 1 (LS1) operations are now wrapping things up before starting the commissioning phase in preparation for the Large Hadron Collider's restart. The giant detector is now more efficient, safer and even greener than ever thanks to the huge amount of work carried out over the past two years.

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"Dirt Detectives"

5th December 2014 – For five days last week, 110 ATLAS collaborators worked in 10 different shifts to help clean and inspect the detector and the cavern that houses it before the toroid magnets are turned on.

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The ATLAS experiment on Scholarpedia

3rd December 2014 – An overview of the ATLAS experiment written by physicists Monica Dunford and Peter Jenni has been published on Scholarpedia. The article is the first in the series on experimental high-energy physics that the editors of the subject hope to host on the website.

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Join the Higgs Hunt

1st December 2014 – Higgs Hunters, the first particle physics venture on Zooniverse, a citizen science project, has been launched in collaboration with the University of Oxford, New York University and the ATLAS Experiment. Higgs Hunters invites online volunteers to participate in studying the properties of the new boson, which may hold clues as to what lies beyond our current understanding of the universe.

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Machine Learning Wins the Higgs Challenge

20th November 2014 – The winner of the four-month long Higgs Machine Learning Challenge, launched on 12 May, is Gábor Melis from Hungary, followed closely by Tim Salimans from The Netherlands and Pierre Courtiol from France. They will receive cash prizes, sponsored by Paris-Saclay Centre for Data Science and Google, of $7000, $4000, and $2000 respectively. The three winners have been invited to participate at the Neural Information Processing Systems conference on 13 December in Canada.

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Quenching jets in the hot dense matter produced by colliding lead ions

13th November 2014 – The Large Hadron Collider is known to collide protons, but for one month a year, beams of lead ions are circulated in the 27-km tunnel and made to collide in the centre of the experiments. The ATLAS experiment has made new precise measurements of the suppression of jets as they blast through the dense matter created by the lead ion collisions.

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Defending Your Life (Part 3)

28th October 2014This is the last part of my attempt to explain our simulation software. You can read Part 1, about event generators, and Part 2, about detector simulation, if you want to catch up. Just as a reminder, we’re trying to help our theorist friend by searching for his proposed “meons” in our data. 

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ATLAS Awards Achievements in Run 1

21st October 2014The ATLAS Outstanding Achievement Awards 2014 were given on 9 October to five individuals or teams of physicists and engineers for their contributions during the Large Hadron Collider's first run in all areas of ATLAS except physics analyses.

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